Thursday, December 1, 2022

Bush camp to Bush camp, Saudi Arabia    December 1, 2022

Breakfast went very smoothly and we were loaded and ready to go at 6:37 when breakfast was supposed to only start at 6:30!  

Our first stop was at a livestock area.  I saw camels-

And goats-

I love the ears and horns of the billy!

I visited with some men from Sudan.  They offered me Sudanese coffee which was very good and spicy.  They live in the market for 6 months of the year and the other half in Sudan-

They haul in a lot of hay from other parts of Saudi and Sudan-

Hanging around bale trucks-

Too funny-

We moved on to Al Hofuf where we visited the souq.  Unfortunately lots of it was closed but I did find an acceptable abaya.  There are interesting shops for male headwear-

And other men’s wear-

We found a Filipino restaurant for lunch and I had pancit-

Krispy Kreme-

I bought a sim card and it works well except apparently iMessage isn’t available in Saudi.  I’ve also lost my contacts, notes and bookmarks but just on my phone.  I know they’re retrievable on the cloud but I will have to wait for Bahrain tomorrow.  

Apparently the two yip yos driving the coach might not be able to get into Bahrain with their work visas so rather than risk getting told to go back to Saudi once we enter No Man’s Land, we have a new plan.  We are camping very close to the border and tomorrow will cross on foot and catch a public bus in to Bahrain.  The only problem is we have a 5 am departure!

Tonight is the last of 4 bushcamps and it’s not good.  We drove until dark, sort of in circles.  What might have been a 1 to 1.5 hour drive turned out to be 3.5 and we are camped close to a beach and freeway and flyover zone for fighter jets so, not so good.  I had to go to the bathroom as soon as we parked.  There was a tower with a green light on top which I thought was a Holiday Inn  so I headed that way in my shorts and t-shirt.  It turned out to be a mosque and the bathroom was further down the beach.  I kept walking and then realized that in this society, I was pretty much naked!  I couldn’t turn back but once I did get back I put on my new abaya and head scarf and went exploring on the beach where there were many families hanging out for the day.  I visited with a man from Riyadh who spoke perfect English.  He, his wife and two little kids are on a holiday and just spent the afternoon on the beach so their kids could play in the sand.  They weren’t spending the night there.  Another family - Mom, Dad and six kids had carpets and walls set up just for the day.  They were making supper and invited me to sit with them and have coffee.  It was the worst coffee I’ve ever had but we sort of had a visit.  None of them spoke English so it was kind of hard-

I’ve had 3 great sleeps so here’s hoping for a 4th!  Ha!  Looking forward to Bahrain!

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